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Monumental Fragility

An ambiguous tea bowl. It is monumental and in the same time it is shy, reclusive, and fragile.

Rengetsu delicately finger-pinched the body of this bowl, and subtly brushed the poem as well as the pine decoration in dark brown paint on light brown clay. And as if done on purpose the old gold lacquer repairs (kintsugi) underline the humble tones of this great piece.

In the future


and long life -

two sprouting leaves

to grow a thousand years.

Otagaki Rengetsu (1791-1875)

Tea bowl

Glazed ceramic

Height 8 cm (3 in.)

Box with inscription (the poem) and collector's seal. R1749




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